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California's Misguided War on Violent Video Games

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OUR LITIGIOUS WORLD
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Attorney Adam Cohen takes an interesting look at violent video games today in Time magazine.

He writes:

"In 2007, the state of California made it illegal to sell violent video games to minors. Next Tuesday, the Supreme Court will hear a challenge to the ban from the video-game industry, which argues that the law violates freedom of speech. It seems likely the court will strike down California's law — as two federal courts already have."

Moreover, Cohen asserts that:

"Young people have free-speech rights, and video games are clearly a form of protected expression. Many video games have elaborate story lines, much like a movie's — and they are a distinct art form, because they allow the players to have a role in determining how the plot unfolds."

What about "protecting" children from animated decapitation and gunplay?

As the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled,
the science is "just not there to show that violent video games have...real-world effects."

"We do not require the State to demonstrate a 'scientific certainty,'" the court wrote in its decision, but "the State must come forward with more than it has."

However, the solution does not rest in the government's hands and legislating what kids should and should not watch or listen to.

Parents, if you don't want your kids playing video games--violent or otherwise--the answer could not be more obvious:

Don't buy them an Xbox.

Problem solved.

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